Andrea's Feed
Sep 4, 2014

U.S. aims to fund alternative to Russian rocket engine in 2016

WASHINGTON, Sept 3 (Reuters) – The U.S. government hopes to
add funding to its 2016 budget for alternatives to Russian-made
rocket engines to launch sensitive satellites, a key Pentagon
official said Wednesday.

Defense Undersecretary Frank Kendall, the Pentagon’s chief
weapons buyer, said Russia’s aggression in Ukraine had clearly
increased concerns about America’s dependence on Russia-built
RD-180 rocket engines that power the heavy-lift Atlas 5 rockets
used to carry U.S. military and spy satellites into space.

Sep 3, 2014

Pentagon says cost to fix F-35 engine issue “relatively minor”

WASHINGTON, Sept 3 (Reuters) – Pentagon chief arms buyer
Frank Kendall said the United States was close to a design fix
for the Pratt & Whitney engine that powers Lockheed Martin
Corp’s F-35 fighter jet after a major engine failure in
June, and the cost would be “relatively minor.”

Kendall told reporters after a defense conference that the
Pentagon was setting up test fixtures to ensure that the
corrective action proposed by engine maker Pratt, a unit of
United Technologies Corp was acceptable and adequate.

Sep 3, 2014

Pentagon official sees ‘very, very painful’ 2016 budget process

WASHINGTON, Sept 3 (Reuters) – The Pentagon’s chief weapons
buyer on Wednesday predicted “very, very painful” negotiations
within the U.S. military as it shapes its fiscal 2016 budget
this fall, given the resumption of mandatory cuts in U.S.
defense spending, and the growing number of national security
threats around the globe.

Frank Kendall, undersecretary of defense for acquisition,
technology and logistics, said the U.S. military services had
submitted their initial budget plans to top Pentagon leaders on
Tuesday, but his staff already had a large stack of items that
it felt should have been included, but were not.

Sep 2, 2014

Pratt to start testing F-35 engine fix this week -sources

WASHINGTON, Sept 2 (Reuters) – United Technologies Corp
this week will begin testing a design change to fix the
problem that caused a massive engine failure on a Lockheed
Martin Corp F-35 fighter jet in June, according to two
sources familiar with the program.

The failure of Pratt & Whitney’s F135 engine grounded the
entire F-35 fleet for several weeks this summer and prevented
the newest and most advanced U.S. warplane from making its
international debut at two UK air shows. Flights have resumed
but with certain restrictions on speed and other maneuvers.

Aug 31, 2014

Obama faces bipartisan criticism over his foreign policy

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama faced criticism over his foreign policy from both Democratic and Republican lawmakers on Sunday as he wrestled with crises in Iraq, Syria, Libya and Ukraine.

Republican lawmakers seized on Obama’s comment on Thursday when he said, “We don’t have a strategy yet” for confronting the Islamic State militant group, saying it suggested indecisiveness.

Aug 25, 2014

Experimental U.S. hypersonic weapon destroyed seconds after launch

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A hypersonic weapon being developed by the U.S. military was destroyed four seconds after its launch from a test range in Alaska early on Monday after controllers detected a problem with the system, the Pentagon said.

The weapon is part of a program to create a missile that will destroy targets anywhere on Earth within an hour of getting data and permission to launch.

Aug 23, 2014

Obama orders review of U.S. police use of military hardware

/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama has ordered a review of the distribution of military hardware to state and local police out of concern at how such equipment has been used during racial unrest in Ferguson, Missouri.

The president ordered the examination of federal programs and funding that enable state and local law enforcement to purchase such equipment, a senior Obama administration official said on Saturday.

Aug 21, 2014

U.S. F-16 grounding a sign of strains on aging ‘Cold War’ jet fleet

WASHINGTON, Aug 21 (Reuters) – The continued grounding of 82
Lockheed Martin Corp F-16 fighter jets due to cracks in
structures between the front and rear pilot seats reveals
strains facing the aging fleet of Cold War-era fighter jets and
underscores the U.S. Air Force’s need for new equipment,
analysts said.

The Air Force this week said it had ordered immediate
inspections of all 157 of its F-16 two-seat D-model jets after
discovering cracks during inspections conducted after flights,
but later allowed 75 of the jets to resume flying. The D-model
jets are 24 years old on average, with more than 5,500 flight
hours.

Aug 21, 2014

Exclusive: Lockheed, suppliers brainstorm how to lower F-35 operating costs

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Lockheed Martin Corp met with 90 key suppliers last week to brainstorm ways to lower the long-term cost of operating and maintaining the F-35 fighter jets from the Pentagon’s current forecast of $1.02 trillion through 2065.

Top officials from the Pentagon’s Defense Contracts Management Agency and the Defense Contracts Audit Agency were also on hand during two days of talks in Fort Worth, Texas.

Aug 21, 2014

Boeing says completed key design review for space taxi

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Boeing Co has completed a key review of its design for a new commercial venture to fly astronauts to the International Space Station, making it the only one of four rival bidders to finish the NASA work on time, company officials said on Thursday.

Boeing is competing with Space Exploration Technologies Corp, or SpaceX, and privately held Sierra Nevada Corp, to develop and build U.S. commercial space taxis to transport astronauts, rather than relying on Russia to ferry them to the station.